Texas Health Resources seeking applications for grants

Ashley Inge

Special to the E-T

Texas Health Resources is currently seeking applications for the Texas Health Community Impact (THCI) 2021-2022 grants.

Texas Health is seeking applications from cross-sector collaborations that will use upstream approaches to address region-specific priority topics.

The following is a non-exclusive list of potential lead organizations that may be eligible to apply:

• State, county, city, or township governments

• Independent school districts

• Public or state controlled institutions of higher education

• Public housing authorities

• Nonprofits having a 501(c)(3) status with the IRS

• Hospital systems can be a part of a collaboration but cannot serve as the lead applicant

THCI desires to direct these grants to innovatively address the interaction of social determinants of health and access to health care with the goal of improving the lives of North Texans.

The total funding allocation for the southern region is $1,000,000, which will be divided among three counties: Erath, Johnson and Kaufman.

The objective for the funding is to decrease depression and anxiety and increase food security by increasing access and navigation to healthy foods among low-income individuals ages 40 and above in the three counties.

“It’s said that your ZIP code can be more impactful than your genetic code. And about 80 percent of our health is impacted by social determinants of health,” said Mandy Forbus, director of community health improvement for the southern region. “For the identified high-needs areas in Erath, Johnson, and Kaufman Counties, the Texas Health Community Impact grants offer an opportunity for a local response to local needs.”

The current Texas Health Community Impact grant is the Texas Reducing Food Insecurity and Depression (TFID), which is led by Tarleton State University. The 18-month grant was awarded last summer and has already been laying the foundation for addressing depression, social isolation and food insecurity for low-income adults ages 55 and over in Erath County.

"The next round of Texas Health Community Impact funding is intended to build off that foundation and taking the impact of COVID-19 into consideration, is anticipated to provide an opportunity to positively impact more lives in 2021-2022,” Forbus said.

She said with the current pandemic, the grants are extremely vital to the community in helping residents deal with the effects that COVID-19 has caused.

“The opportunity for a local approach to collaboratively address data-based needs is exciting,” Forbus said. “Many times, organizations are doing great things on their own. Through Texas Health Community Impact, our aim is to harness those solo efforts and work collectively to address social determinants of health. The saying ‘it takes a village’ rings true – and Texas Health is ready to continue collaborating with your community to make a sustainable difference.”